The last competition day at the IBU Junior Open European Championships Biathlon in Pokljuka, Slovenia, brought junior women 10 kilometres pursuit and junior men 12,5 kilometres pursuit. The last gold medals of the Championships went to Selina Grotian and Paul Fontaine.
After the very windy Saturday, the conditions were much better on Sunday when the junior women and men pursuit were on the programme.
Starting with a number one and 40 seconds advantage Selina Grotian from Germany managed to stay on the top of the results list also after Sunday’s pursuit. The 17-year-old missed two shots in the second shooting, so she was behind at this point of the race, but in the remaining two shootings she was unmistakable and she went into the comfortable lead again to win her second gold medal of the IBU Junior Open European Championships Biathlon.
“I just can’t believe it. I can’t describe in words how it feels. I want to thank all the technicians because my skis were unbelievable and the whole team for the spirit here in Pokljuka,” said the young German biathlete.
Grotian was 25.5 seconds faster than her closest rival Jeanne Richard from France, who jumped to the second podium position after being fourth in Saturday’s sprint. Another German who was on the podium today was Lisa Maria Spark, who advanced to the bronze medal from tenth starting position.
The best Slovenian was Lena Repinc who advanced to 13th place (she was 17th in sprint). Živa Klemenčič was 20th, Kaja Zorč 37th and Zala Repe 53rd.
In the afternoon’s junior men pursuit race a lot of excitement happened on the shooting range and on the track. At the end, it was French celebration thanks to Paul Fontaine who jumped from the fifth starting position to the highest podium place. 22-year-old had a faultless shooting performance. He was the only one in the race with clean shooting.
“It was so hard on the shooting range, but I am very happy with my clean shooting. I also had really good skis and legs today,” said Fontaine.
Otto Invenius from Finland repeated Saturday’s success in sprint, and won silver medal despite four missed shots. He was 36.2 seconds behind. Bronze medal went to Jan Gunka from Poland. Winner of the sprint race, Czech Jonas Marecek, who started first, did not have a good day on the shooting range. With five missed shots, he was fifth.
The best Slovenian result was produced by Pavel Trojer who was 34th. Matic Bradeško was 51st, while Matic Repnik and Jaša Zidar did not start.